Healthy Snacks

Hello everyone!! I have had diabetes for about 6 years now, anniversary is August 1st. I am 21 years old and though I am not as active as many diabetics, what are some favorite, low carb, and healthy snacks y’all eat during the day or even at night? I have a hard time finding the good healthy, even protein snacks that are better for me besides the light fruit cups. Some days I feel like I’m doing pretty good with my blood sugar but other days, not so good. I used to eat slim jims all the time, but I have become tired of them where they do not taste good anymore. Beef jerky is good, but pricey!

If y’all could give me some good ideas, that would be great!! Also, what kinds of food make your blood sugar go high or maybe even low, after you dose? Or do you always dose for a snack? I dose sometimes, depending on what my blood sugar was before I ate the snack or how many carbs the snack was.

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I’m surprised you didn’t mention nuts.

Nuts are the best snack all around for diabetics (unless you have allergies).

Raw almonds in particular are super healthy and have excellent nutritional value. Don’t pay attention to the calories. There is plenty of evidence that our bodies do not store calories from nuts the way it stores calories from other foods. Google it for yourself.

I can’t speak for everyone, but the carbs in nuts have almost zero effect on me. I do not bolus for nuts.


Hi Hannah @hanstan, it all depends on what YOU like for sacks and why you are wanting something to eat.

As Sal @Zale suggests, nuts are a good, nutritious very low carb snack that I use to satisfy a craving for something in my mouth. But nuts will not really help at all if you are attempting to bring up your BGL - in an instance like that, I usually eat a certain number of crackers with a generous spread of peanut butter.

I have learned to avoid just about all snacks that are labeled “healthy”; healthy’s often have significantly more carb, by volume, than regular - especially in snack foods. I also use fresh fruit and this almost always needs to be accompanied by insulin – I don’t call fruit ‘low carb’.

When attending a function with a buffet spread, I usually tend toward the cheese and fresh veggies section, and of course shrimp - I use these foods to stem and hopefully control my appetite and tending to ‘go overboard’.

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Grilled Chicken is our favorite! I always have grilled chicken in the fridge for my daughter. I usually grill 4 chicken breasts every week and have it ready to eat cold or hot. My daughter likes to cut it into strips and will dip the chicken in ranch or honey mustard dressing. Sometimes I marinate the chicken in Italian dressing or Balsamic dressing. Or sometimes she has a chop salad with the grilled chicken, chunks of avocado, feta cheese and black olives with a bit of balsamic dressing on the salad. Very low carb and quite filling. She also does not have to bolus for this kind of a chop salad. I also make her egg salad and she eats it on brown rice crackers for a snack.

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I’m just going to list the items I like, that are low carb, high protein. I would urge you to sit down with a dietitian that is also a CDE. They are a huge asset when you end up in a “diet funk.”

  1. Flat Outs: sandwich wraps, pile them high with turkey, peanut butter, Veges, whatever you please.
  2. Cottage cheese: I like to slice up a tomato or beets on mine.
  3. Plain Greek yogurt with a ranch seasoning packet and use it as a vege dip: super good and good for you! Less calories than ranch dressing and packs a serious protein punch.
  4. Hard boiled eggs
  5. Rice cakes piled with almond butter
  6. Protein water: it’s got a bit of a gritty texture to it, but doesn’t taste too bad and low in carbs.
  7. Yogurt
  8. Seasoned nuts: my favorite are the dark chocolate flavored almonds and wasabi almonds
  9. Hummus with celery and carrot sticks
  10. Meat and cheese sticks
  11. Skim milk with a scoop of vanilla protein powder: a bit high in carbs, around 20 grams, but you’ll get 20 grams of protein
  12. Egg Roll Stir fry: if you can’t find a recipe, let me know! I have an excellent recipe!

Those are a few of my favorite snacks. Again, I urge you to speak to a dietitian. All of these listed, were brought to my diet after speaking with a dietician. Best of luck! I know it can be very frustrating to find foods that keep your diet exciting.

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Hi Hannah! @hanstan - Happy (almost) anniversary!

I tend toward the roasted, unsalted nuts/seeds as my go-to when I want to chew and gum isn’t satisfying anymore. Baby carrots are OK (I take six to eight with me to work for the mid-afternoon blahs) and celery sticks are AWE-SOME because it takes more calories to burn them than they supply (especially a bonus when you are trying to loose or maintain weight). I like Goldfish, pretzel Goldfish, and Teddy Graham-type cookies because of the serving size - something like 1 g cho per. I also eat mini Kind bars - 100 cal, 12 g carbs. String cheese or the mixed individually packaged cheeses are another good nibble. Avocado is a good, filling snack item, too. Another option is to add different mustards to your Slim Jims (but watch the amount of sodium they supply - I prefer jerky because they aren’t all salt-cured).

Did you know you can make your own jerky to save $$? It’s incredibly easy as long as you get the right cut of meat.

What to avoid like the plague: “diet” foods, weight loss foods, things with names like “South Beach” or “Weight Watchers”, and here’s why … Foods such as I’ve named rely heavily on artificial sweeteners (which are evil anyway), but namely the sugar alcohols like mannitol, sorbitol, xylitol. Sugar alcohols aren’t digested immediately, but they metabolize over time as sugar is apt to do. The danger, and I do mean danger, is you don’t know when they will spike in your blood stream, throwing off your numbers, and possibly causing you to chase after your glucose levels - first taking insulin to cover, then treating the low, and so on, and on. I had a dietitian tell me to eat a Snickers instead of a South Beach cereal bar. (I really like Snickers anyway :slight_smile: )

Not to derail from the topic, but part of the battle for us women is the insistence of our hormones to fluctuate from day to day throughout the month. Also, make sure you are rotating sites if you are injecting or pumping.

I hope you find something to make your menu less predictable!



I wish my son liked any of that. What do you do when you just want to have some cookies like normal people?

Do you bake? There are a lot of low-carb cookie recipes out there. It will still have some carbs, but it will be much, much easier to manage glucose.

I also noticed that gluten-free baked goods, pastries etc, while still loaded with carbs, are much easier for me to bolus and control for than regular pastries.

If you don’t bake you can always buy these things at stores like Whole Foods (for an inflated price).

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Hi Tin @tlj, the carb count of many cookies available in stores is “low” and can be readily managed for people with diabetes - but be careful. If your son has had diabetes for a year or two he/you should be comfortable balancing his food intake with insulin - but be very careful not to stack insulin by overdosing.

When looking at cookies and crackers I generally avoid any that have “No Sugar Added” or “Healthy” in the label and avoid sugar alcohols such as Sorbitol, Mannitol, etc. because these substances cause erratic and unpredictable fluctuations in BGL [Body Glucose Level]. Stick mostly with natural ingredients if you can.

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@Zale I do like eating pecans every now and then. Peanuts are good, but I am not a big fan on the salty ones.

@Dennis I love shrimp, veggies, cheese, and crackers. I prefer Ritz or Saltine crackers. I have never tried peanut butter on them, but I will next time. Fruit tends to raise the blood sugar up quickly, especially bananas. My other go to snack for when my blood sugar is nosediving is raisins with string cheese for protein. I have heard certain crackers can send your blood sugar sky high in no time!

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@cherylkilpatrick Grilled chicken is so tasty and chopped salad is delicious! Grilled foods are best for sure. I have never had brown rice crackers I don’t think! I have realized that honey mustard dressing does not run my blood sugar up, but BBQ will. I do not dose for condiments, but with BBQ sauce I have to.

I make gluten free chocolate chip cookies with coconut, craisins and walnuts. I can have 1 between meals without a bolus. If you want 2 or 3, add a little insulin. Not sure of the carb count, probably about 15 g of carb per small cookie

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This cookie recipe sounds very good. Would you please send me the list of ingredients and instructions on how to prepare and cook them? Thank you.